ENUGU – The Methodist Church has called on the Enugu State Government to handover public schools in the state to their original owners before May 29.
The Methodist Archbishop of Enugu Diocese, Most Rev. Christopher Ede, made the call at the commencement of the 40th anniversary of the church in Enugu on Friday.
Ede said the state government had in 2009 commenced the process of returning such schools to missionaries but had not completed it.
He said that 59 public schools made up of three secondary schools and 56 primary schools were returned to the Methodist Church.
“But the policy was such that the government is still holding part of the administration of these schools, including staff salaries and the control of payment of fees.
“Due to the free education policy of the state government, we collect not more than N2,000 per student as fees,” he said.
The archbishop said the church, however, ensured that discipline prevailed in these institutions.
He said that the partial handover of the schools had a time-lag within which the churches would take full control.
The archbishop appealed to Gov. Sullivan Chime to ensure that the processes of full handover of the schools were completed before the expiration of his administration on May 29.
“The temporary control of the schools by the church has a time-lag and it is almost over.
“We appeal to the state governor to gazette the schools before he leaves office on May 29,” he said.
The cleric said that the church could not take full control of the schools if the papers were not on gazette.
Ede said the state government should show more transparency in handling the process, noting that schools handed over to the Catholic Church were already gazetted.
“We, therefore, want government to gazette the schools belonging to the Anglican and Methodist Churches in the state,” he said.
The archbishop said that events commemorating the 40th anniversary of the diocese would last for five months and would culminate in September.
“The high point of this medical mission will be the official inauguration of our ultra-modern new Wesley Specialist Hospital in the state.
“We have played our part in the spiritual, social and educational development of the entire South-East and great leaders have emerged from among Methodist faithful who passed through us,” Ede said. (NAN)
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